By REED NELSON
This week at the Dirty Dozen, we break down the week that was in Pac-12 football, and occasionally take unwarranted shots at our Pac-12 counterparts. Sorry we’re not sorry. To kick it off, here is Week One in 140 characters or less:
— SkoDucks.com (@SkoDucksLive) September 5, 2012
Utah 41, Northern Colorado 0 — Utah’s defense behaved like the Pac-12’s best, and were predictably dominant over a Northern Colorado team that has lost 19 of their last 20 games. Jordan Wynn was good-not-great (19-27, 200 yards, 2 TD and an interception) in his first action in nearly a year. John White was his normal dominant self, racking up 119 yards and a touchdown, and backup QB Travis Wilson ran in two more.
UCLA 49, Rice 24 —It was the Jonathan Franklin show in Houston last Thursday, as the senior back rushed for 214 yards and three scores in the Bruins blowout win.
Washington State 6, BYU 30 —It was the awesome start that Mike Leach was looking for: WSU threw for 400 yards and ran for 100 more en route to a 500-plus yard offensive performance and a blowout, 30-6 victory over… Kidding. The Mike Leach Era kicked off to much fanfare then delivered zero of the sizzle that was, at the very least, watchable in Lubbock. The Cougars didn’t even score a touchdown. Oh yeah, BYU played pretty well too.
Arizona State 63, Northern Arizona 6 — The Todd Graham Era in Tempe, however, opened exactly as expected. ASU thumped in-state non-rival NAU 63-6, and Taylor Kelly tossed for 247 yards and a score in his Sun Devil debut.
Stanford 20, San Jose State 17 — Egad. The Post-Harbaugh Cardinal were just fine in 2011 when new coach David Shaw and ex-wunderkind Andrew Luck marched Stanford within makable field goals of back-to-back BCS bowl victories. 2012 kicked off a bit differently: Jordan Williamson, last season’s kicker/goat/factory-of-Stanford-sadness who missed three FGs in the Fiesta Bowl, made two on Saturday as Stanford held off the second mightiest set of Trojans in the state of California. I’ll allow for a collective relief-wipe of the brow — Stanford is one of just two ranked opponents Oregon faces in 2012.
Oregon 57, Arkansas State 34 — Oregon jumped out to a 50-point first half, but the second unit produced only seven points in the second half, blowing the ever-so-delicate 37-point spread. If you’re not a gambling individual, then here’s the recap: Oregon won.
California 24, Nevada 31 — The only Pac-12 team with a more disappointing opening weekend than Washington State was Cal. In slightly nontraditional inaugural fashion, the Bears opened California Memorial Stadium with an implosion, and never got rolling against an underrated Nevada team.
Colorado 17, Colorado State 22 — Sign found on the front door of Folsom Field: “Colorado is still working on it, and will be until further notice. Will be back to check mail in four weeks. Call if you have any questions 866-BUFFALO. P.S.- Rashaan Salaam: If you are reading this, and came to visit while we were out, we miss you. Please come back. Like, for good. We’ll figure something out, you, Kordell and us. XOXO <3. P.P.S.- If you see Kordell, tell him to stop screening our calls. It makes us sad.”
Oregon State vs. Nicholls State, postponed — Hurricane Isaac grounded Nicholls State, postponed the OSU opener. Like food caught between my teeth, I’ll leave the Beaver-related snark for later.
USC 49, Hawaii 10 — Matt Barkley threw for four, Malcolm Lee and Robert Woods are apparently made of Calvin Johnson, and USC trumped a Hawaii squad that’s still probably stumbling and stammering around the tarmac, stunned and blinded from the mugging they incurred in L.A., cryptically repeating June Jones’ name in an eerily repetitive manner, “June Jones, June Jones, the horror, the horror.” Oh, and USC dropped from #1 to #2. Polls rule.
Arizona 24, Toledo 17 — RichRod’s back and you’re gonna be in trouble, hey now, hey now, RichRod’s back! Sorry for that. It’s just been a while since I got to enjoy a RichRod (one word) captained team; since I’ve been able to outwardly question his personnel decisions, since I’ve seen him give the RichRod face, since I’ve witnessed his addict-like denial when it comes to the existence of this weird “defense-thing” concept that people keep discussing. Oh yeah, he’s back. And the Wildcats kept it close against Toledo. Who cares about the what’s and the how’s, RichRod’s back. This could be fun (I love typing RichRod).
Washington 21, San Diego State 12 — In the Game That No One in America Was Awake For, Keith Price threw for 222 yards and a TD to lead the Huskies over the Aztecs. Bishop Sankey, however, is no Chris Polk, grinding out just 66 yards on 22 carries against the MWC foe.
Tomorrow: The Dirty Preview